There are those out there who practice martial arts and will try to understand as much about these combat sports as possible. However, there are those who want to know more, which is why guides like this one exist!
If there’s one thing that the majority of us know, it’s that these martial arts, such as karate, Judo, and Jiu-Jitsu all have their own ways of rewarding their students.
One of the ways that many martial arts do this is to have a colored belt system in place so that the students have something to aim for, another goal ahead of them.
As well as this, you can also see the different levels of ability when two people are training, or having a spar. However, not every martial art will have a colored belt system to display rank.
Does Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu have a colored belt ranking system? What is a coral belt? What does it mean? We’ll answer all of these questions in our guide! Read on to find out more!
Is There A Colored Belt System In BJJ?
As we mentioned, there are often ranking systems throughout the world of combat sports and we know that you’d expect sports like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to have one as well.
However, there are some martial arts that don’t have a traditional ranking system like this, so it’s not all as easy as that. For example, Muay Thai hasn’t got one, traditionally.
Although, you’ll be pleased to find out that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu does have a colored belt ranking system, so there are a few different colors to choose from when it comes to finding out about the ranking system.
The one that we will be looking at first is the coral belt before we move on to look at the other levels of experience.
What Is A Coral Belt In Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?
There are lots of different colored belts in the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu ranking system, however, the coral belt is the seventh level, or degree of belt that can be achieved.
Also known as the red and black belt, this level of experience and ability is for those who rightfully deserve to be coral belts in this martial art.
The belt is made up of two colors, which come in the form of black and red. The two colors alternate throughout the belt. This belt is sometimes confused with the belt awarded in the fourth-degree black belt by certain Judo bodies such as the USJA.
The belt is called the coral belt because it is named after the coral snake. A worthy comparison!
There is actually another variation of the coral belt in the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, with the red/white belt also being referred to as the coral belt.
However, there are visible differences between the two, to avoid confusion with the name. The graduation guidelines were amended in 2013 by The International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation.
This was to ensure the transition between the seventh degree and the eighth degree with regard to the ranking system was a lot smoother.
Basically, someone who has achieved the eighth degree will wear a red and white belt, similar to those in Judo who wear the same colors from the sixth to eighth degrees. This is also called a coral belt!
The IBJJF needs those who wear the belt to have a minimum of 10 years of training and teaching at this level before progressing onto the next level of rank, which is the red belt.
What Is The Next Color?
So, you’re probably wondering what the next rank of ability is and what people on the coral rank need to work toward. Well, we’ve got the answer!
As we briefly mentioned, the next rank higher than these two coral belts is the red belt, which is the ninth degree on the color ranking system.
This belt, according to Royler Gracie, is reserved for people with enough fame and influence for this belt to take them to the next level. The pinnacle of art!
However, this is not an easy belt to achieve and will require many years of hard work and training for someone to be seen as worthy enough to wear it.
For example, if you have achieved a black belt at 19 years of age, then you can expect to achieve a red belt by the time you turn 67. That’s a 48-year gap between these two belts if you ignore all of the belts in-between.
The majority of these tenth degree practitioners are referred to as grandmasters, which further emphasizes their efforts to learn the martial art.
Can Anyone Earn The Coral Belt?
Well, as you can tell, there is a lot of time that will be needed to earn your colors and improve your ability and experience. However, there are those who will be a natural phenomenon, but they still can’t earn any old belt.
Children between the ages of 4 and 15 will be allowed to earn their white belt, as well as progress further. However, they will not be able to progress past a blue belt, as this can only be rewarded to people who are 16 years of age and above.
Because of this, it is not technically possible for just anyone to earn their coral rank. On top of this, there are many years required for people to get anywhere near this level, showing the dedication needed.
There you have it! The coral belt isn’t actually a coral color and comes in two different forms. These are black with red and white with red.
Both of these are achieved at the seventh and eighth levels of colored rank, with people dedicating large portions of their life to get the honor of wearing one of these belts.
At the end of the day, those people who want to achieve this level of experience need to be fully dedicated to the cause of improving their Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu abilities. It’s all about motivation and focus.